The #HanSolo spinoff movie has had it rough over the past week. Due to "creative differences," Lucasfilm fired the directing team of Phil Lord and Christopher Miller with only three weeks of shooting left. Now, things have seemingly gone from bad to worse as more people have been let go from the production of the increasingly troubled #StarWars anthology movie, and there are rumors about the quality of star Alden Ehrenreich's performance in the role that Harrison Ford made famous.
Another One Bites The Dust
According to the Hollywood Reporter, Lord and Miller were not the first people to be fired from the production of the Han Solo movie. Before the directing duo's disagreements with producers hit the boiling point, Lucasfilm fired editor Chris Dickens (Slumdog Millionaire) and replaced him with Pietro Scalia (Black Hawk Down). It should be noted that both men are Oscar-winning film editors with an undeniable talent, but the producers were reportedly unsatisfied with Dickens's work on the movie.
Not The Han We Were Looking For?
Perhaps the most shocking news in the report was the producers' decision to hire an acting coach for lead actor #AldenEhrenreich. Hiring an acting coach may not seem like such a big deal, but when when shooting's almost over, it's a worrying signal that raises a lot of red flags. As THR reports:
[N]ot entirely satisfied with the performance that the directors were eliciting from Rules Don't Apply star Alden Ehrenreich, Lucasfilm decided to bring in an acting coach. (Hiring a coach is not unusual; hiring one that late in production is.) Lord and Miller suggested writer-director Maggie Kiley, who worked with them on 21 Jump Street.
This also conflicts with earlier rumors that Lucasfilm executives were extremely satisfied with Ehrenreich's performance.
Trouble In Galactic Paradise
Lord and Miller direct their movies on the fly rather than following a predetermined path, but Lucasfilm is all about planning in advance. The duo would encourage actors to improvise, and this reportedly did not sit well with producers. The 21 Jump Street tandem may have thought this was a case of an unstoppable force meeting an immovable object, but it turns out that Lucasfilm considered them quite stoppable, as this led to Ron Howard taking over directing duties.
Disney and Lucasfilm have a lot at stake with the Han Solo movie, but so far, the way things have been managed are concerning. The big question is whether this is a case of risk-averse producers nipping the directors' creative vision in the bud, or whether Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy — who has worked on many of the greatest movies in history — is saving the Han Solo film with unpopular but necessary moves.
Hopefully, everything will be ironed out by the movie's expected 2018 release date, and Han Solo gets the prequel movie he deserves.
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